By Molly Deatherage
I was with YWAM Germany for 8 years. They were eventful years, of course -- full of teaching and serving and outreach, full of intercession and worship, full of rich friendship with people from all over the world.
I left to return to my hometown, a small city of 10,000 far from any medium- or large-sized city. I had always attended two churches, one the traditional mainline church I grew up in, and one a charismatic independent church. And I kept that up when I returned.
But I wasn’t “going back” or “going home” in one sense of the word, and that made the transition a lot easier. I had a clear vision for the next chapter of my life, beginning at home. That chapter? To re-train to prepare for another mission field. My life has always been fueled by vision, by a sense of God’s call for the future, and so I didn’t go back – I went forward towards the next thing that was going to lead to the next thing. I got a degree in English and another in English Education to qualify me to go to the developing world as an English teacher in a university.
But the vision for the future didn’t stop me from investing my heart and soul into the students and professors there on in the University, or falling in love with English Literature. And I found ways of exploring literature that opened up the discussion into world view issues, a tool I used when I went overseas again.
So, for me, one of the keys for transitioning out of YWAM is not to be thinking of “going back” but of going forward.